My neighbors know my favorite garden tools are old silverware and my fingers. I’m Old School.
But there are 10 traditional cottage garden tools that make life in the garden easier. This season I’m breaking down and purchasing them.
1. A Spade and Fork – Essential for digging and lifting the soil. I’ve been making do with a child-sized shovel from Home Depot. It’s time to get serious. I’m moving up to a child-sized spade and fork from Clarington Forge. These tools are made in England and have heads made from a single piece of steel. The heads are securely riveted to an ash shaft. They are exceptionally strong and are backed by a lifetime guarantee. Much better than my old spoon.
Spade and Fork
2. Hoes – I’m going with a flat bottomed Dutch hoe that’s good for digging and weeding. In the early days of cottage gardening, hoes were the main tools used, although in much heavier versions. You may recall seeing them depicted in older English paintings.
3. A Hand Trowel and Hand Fork – If you can only afford one set of the finest garden tools, buy these. They may be the only tools you really need!
Clarington Gift Set
4. A Rake – A rake is another tool that performs a multitude of garden tasks.
5. Pruning Shears – I have about 5 pairs of pruning shears, from a big lopper to a tiny pruner. I’ll probably buy another one this year! All of mine are bypass secateurs which have two blades, like scissors. I use them on all my plants as they are gentle and do not damage the fragile stems.
6. Gloves – A good pair of gardening gloves is essential when pruning roses or anything with thorns. Also crucial if you want to avoid poison ivy.
7. A Wheelbarrow – I couldn’t live without a wheelbarrow. Mine is a large plastic number, not vintage or beautiful but essential for composting the beds.
8. A Watering Can – I collect rainwater for my container plants. And it looks good in a cottage garden!
9. A Planting Dibber – This tool is useful for anyone looking to plant a large amount of seeds or small transplants.
10. A Trug – Okay, maybe not a necessity, but it sure is gorgeous!
A Cottage Garden Trug